Let’s get on to the decimal.
We have a category — let’s say
22 Contracts — and we want to store some things there.
We create a Johnny.Decimal number by adding a decimal point to our category, and starting at number
We start at
.01 and not just
.1 because of the way that computers sort files. Also it’s more consistent, and consistency is elegant.
Now we just decide what we’re keeping there and give it a nice name.
22.01 Cleaning contract
Later, we need to store another contract. What to do? Just use the next number.
22.02 Office lease
That was easy
You create a full Johnny.Decimal number by choosing a category and looking for the next available number after the decimal.
The thing to remember here is that the number after the decimal has no meaning whatsoever: we just start at
.01 and work our way up.
“What happens when I get to 99?”
You never will. And if you do, the category you defined was almost certainly too broad. Split it up.
Give your Johnny.Decimal items simple names
This system lets us give concise names to things, because we already know from the number which category they’re in.
22.01 Cleaning contract because it’s short and reads well, but you could have gone with
22.01 Cleaning if you’d preferred. You’re already in a folder called
Everything that starts with
22 is a contract.
IDs group by created date
This solves another of our problems with the alphabet.
More often than not we want to view items that were created around the same time close to each other. At home I have
16 Travel and it provides a nice example.
If my trips sorted alphabetically, they’d look like this.
That looks neat, but it’s no use at all. Half of those trips are in the distant past. I’d like to keep them as an archive, but I don’t care about them now.
This is more useful.
Now things that occur together appear together, and you can immediately jump to the stuff that’s relevant now.
Note that my trips don’t even necessarily appear in the order that I took them. They appear in the order that I planned them.